FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The City of Fort St. John has officially been announced as the host city of the 2020 BC Winter Games, taking place February 20th – 23rd, 2020.
BC Games Society President and CEO Kelly Mann made the announcement this morning at the Pomeroy Sport Centre on behalf of Community, Sport and Cultural Development Minister Peter Fassbender.
“It is exciting to bring the BC Winter Games back to northern British Columbia, said Mann. “The City’s investment in sport facilities and the recent experience hosting major events will be a great benefit to staging a successful BC Winter Games in 2020.”
Fort St. John last hosted the BC Winter Games in 1984, in addition to the Northern BC Winter Games on three separate occasions. The Pomeroy Sport Center opened in 2010 and since that time the city has had a renewed focus on hosting major sports events, including the successful 2015 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, the 2015 Canada Winter Games speed skating events, and the 2017 World Masters Speed Skating Championships underway this week.
Roughly 1,500 athletes along with 600 coaches, mangers, and officials will participate in approximately 19 sports over the four days of the Winter Games. Athletes range in age between 9 and 19 years old depending on the sport. Fort St. John natives Denny Morrison and Bo Hedges both competed at the BC Games before going on to the podium at the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“We are honoured to be hosting the BC Winter Games in Fort St. John,” said Fort St. John Mayor Lori Ackerman. “The opportunity for our young athletes to compete at the provincial level right here at home with all of their friends and neighbours cheering them on is just as important as the economic benefits this event brings the community. With the incredible volunteerism our community has contributed to the other provincial and national events we have hosted, I have no doubt the 2020 Games will be exceptional.”
Three other communities were announced as hosts of future BC Games in separate events held simultaneously today. The 2020 BC Summer Games will be held in Maple Ridge, the 2022 BC Winter Games in Greater Vernon and the 2022 BC Summer Games in Prince George.